I still find it amusing that men can refer to a motorcar as a ‘she’ and when there are modifications made to a model it is referred to as a face lift! How can something with a turbo-charged engine be construed as feminine? And for the life of me, I had no idea men were such experts on cosmetic surgery!
So from a woman’s point of view, if one looks at the modifications to the 2010 Fiat Bravo, (it is about what I need now) a nip and a tuck in the form of a nose and eye job – there is even evidence of some Botox treatment.
This five-door compact received a new front grille that features a burnished metallic finish. The headlights are now smoked and the direction indicators are clear.
Fiat has also accomplished something with the Bravo’s noise department, several men out there wish they could do at home. Thanks to improved insulation, the 2010 Bravo Sport is appreciably quieter when cruising and that extends to wind noise as well – commendably suppressed, even at high speed.
There was no need for major surgery internally and the tactile, soft-touch carbon fibre-look inserts are still in place, as are the deep-dished main instruments and sports seats. However, the door panels have been reworked to incorporate reflectors and a headrest has been added for the rear middle passenger seat.
Fiat SA has also taken the opportunity to rationalise the range by exclusively offering the 110kW 1.4 T-Jet version that is now simply referred to as the Bravo Sport. After the nip and tuck, the new Bravo is an even more attractive prospect, thanks to a refreshed price positioning – at R239 900. Not bad for a near-perfect mix of style, performance, safety and practicality.
Now, let’s get back to the heart of the Bravo – nothing feminine here. A turbo-charged small engine that packs a mighty punch. Fiat’s responsive 110kW 1.4-litre T-Jet engine is still shoe-horned into the Bravo Sport and mated to a six-speed manual gearbox. It combines performance equal to, or better than, a conventionally aspirated 1.8/2-litre engine with a reduction of between 10 and 20% in fuel consumption and emissions.
Via a ‘drive-by-wire’ throttle system, the1.4-litre T-Jet engine provides outstanding low-end torque, almost entirely devoid of the lag in power delivery traditionally associated with turbo-charger installations.
A special Bravo Sport treat is the overboost button (marked ‘Sport’) located on the centre console, that permits an impressive delivery of 230Nm of torque at 3 000rpm (as opposed to 206Nm at 2 000rpm).
The Italian Stallion
So whether you refer to a car as a she, stud or stallion, I personally classify the Fiat Bravo in the young stallion category! It’s got the firm bod with the correct trimmings – rear spoiler, side skirts, 17-inch alloys, radio/CD/MP3, air-conditioning, power steering, steering wheel with audio controls, sport seats, racing pedals, ABS with EBD, ESP with ASR and Hill holder… and the horse power to go with it!
There’s also a range of cost options available, ranging from 18-inch alloys to full leather trim.
Enhancing the ownership prospect, the new Fiat Bravo Sport has 30 000km service intervals and comes with a 3-year/100 000km warranty as well as a 5-year/90 000km service plan.
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